April 14, 2005 • Volume 13 Number 15

Katharine Hastings Dies; Filled Many Roles at BC

A funeral Mass was held April 4 at St. Augustine Church in Andover for Katharine Hastings, a long-time, and versatile, employee of Boston College who died March 31. She was 84.

Hastings taught French at Boston College for more than 20 years and also served as the assistant to four academic vice presidents. During that time she was responsible for organizing the University's Commencement Exercises, developing and leading student language programs to European universities and organizing faculty seminars, among other duties.

Hastings also served as the director of Connolly House, initially known as the Boston College faculty center.

"She was the university's gracious hostess," recalled University Historian Thomas O'Connor, who first met Hastings in the early 1950s when they both worked at BC's Evening College on Newbury Street.

"At the time she was working as the registrar for the college and teaching French," said O'Connor. "She was an outstanding organizer in so many areas."

O'Connor said one of her greatest contributions to BC was organizing the so-called "Andover weekends" which brought together groups of faculty members from across the University for two-day seminars at the Andover Inn.

"They were outstanding, and she did all of the work," said O'Connor, who credited the seminars with helping to develop collegiality among BC faculty. "They were very important seminars."

"She was a very active, intelligent and gracious person," he said.

Hastings graduated from Lawrence High School and earned an undergraduate degree at Radcliffe College. She later received her master's degree from Harvard University.

Hastings retired from the Boston College in 1997.

She is survived by her nephew, Richard A. McGovern Jr., of Milton, and her nieces, Beth McGovern of New York, Susan McGovern of Lincolnville, Me., and Ellen Stanfield of Cape Elizabeth, Me.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Boston College Immersion Program in Foreign Languages, or a Mass Card in her name. Burial was at St. Augustine's Cemetery, Andover.

-Stephen Gawlik

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